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Clin Diagn Lab Immunol. 2005 Jan;12(1):152-6.

Serological specificities of murine hybridoma monoclonal antibodies against Neisseria meningitidis serogroups B, C, Y, and W135 and evaluation of their usefulness as serogrouping reagents by indirect whole-cell enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.

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Laboratory for Pathogenic Neisseria and Vaccine Preventable Bacterial Diseases, National Microbiology Laboratory, Health Canada, 1015 Arlington St., Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3E 3R2.


Murine hybridoma monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) were produced against the capsular antigens of serogroups B, C, Y, and W135 meningococci. Each serogroup-specific MAb reacted with the extracted capsular polysaccharide from its homologous serogroup only and did not react with capsules from the other three serogroups. The application of these MAbs for serogroup identification of meningococci was demonstrated by their abilities to correctly identify 183 clinical isolates of 185 meningococci recovered from individual invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) patients during routine surveillance in 2002. The remaining two meningococci were identified by PCR grouping as C in one case and Y in another, but neither isolate was positive by bacterial agglutination using rabbit antisera or by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay using MAbs. The specificities of the anti-Y and anti-W135 MAbs were further assessed by tests with 37 serogroup W135 and 106 serogroup Y meningococci recovered from IMD cases during 1999 to 2001 and 2003. All 143 meningococci except one serogroup Y isolate were correctly identified by positive reactions with the corresponding MAbs that identified their homologous serogroups. The single serogroup Y isolate was received as nonagglutinable and tested as negative with both rabbit anti-Y antiserum and anti-Y MAb but was positive for the serogroup Y-specific siaD gene. The advantage of using MAbs for serogrouping of meningococci is discussed.

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